ZF Friedrichshafen has opened a new €15 million technology centre in India which the company says reinforces the company’s global research and development network.
†he inauguration of the facility, located in Hyderabad, was attended by KT Rama Rao, India’s Minister for IT of the Telangana Government.
The ZF India Technology Center will focus on developing advanced electronics and software solutions for automotive and industrial applications.
As well as strengthening its global research and development network, ZF says it will expand local product development in India.
ZF CEO Dr Stefan Sommer said at the inauguration: “ZF is growing substantially in many regions and this is especially true in India. We are delighted to now be part of the business hub in Hyderabad known as the Innovation Center.
“In a dynamically changing and increasingly digital world, speed is of the essence. We are proud to have been able to set up the India Technology Center so quickly.”
ZF first announced plans to build the ITC in September 2016. A total of €15 million is planned to be invested in the facility, continuing over the next five years, with 2,500 engineers employed by 2020.
Mamatha Chamarthi, chief digital officer at ZF, added: “The India Technology Center fits seamlessly into ZF’s research and development network and will become a pillar of innovation for the company.
“The demand for software solutions is growing, and ZF is increasing its capacity in this field exponentially. This will help us support our customers’ growth aspirations in both the global and local markets.”
In collaboration with the global engineering teams, the Technology Center’s activities will focus mainly on electronics and software innovations.
At the same time, the ITC is also boosting local research and product development.
ZF says it is taking advantage of the country’s large talent pool to further develop its portfolio of intelligent mechanical systems.
Rama Rao said: “With an industry leader like ZF coming to Hyderabad, it is going to further reinforce our position as a growing hub for the automotive industry.”
One of the companies which worked with ZF to develop the technology facility is Information Services Group, which won praise for its engineering services work.
ISG says it worked with ZF to conceptualize its technology center, helping the client develop a business case, analyze which engineering services could be offshored to India, design the center’s organization and operating model, and select its sourcing partners – TCS and Tech Mahindra.
ISG also established a program management office to ensure all aspects of the center’s development and launch were delivered according to plan.
ISG advisors Karan Kamal and Sriram Rangachary, who served as project leader, accepted a certificate and a plaque in recognition of their work from ZF CEO Sommer on behalf of the firm.
ZF project sponsors Mamatha Chamarthi, chief digital officer, and Dr Eckart VonWesterholt, vice president of research and development, were also in attendance.
Todd Lavieri, president of ISG Americas who oversees ISG Engineering Services, says: “We congratulate ZF on the opening of its India Technology Center, and we are extremely honored to have played such an important part in the center’s development.
“This is a watershed moment for our Engineering Services practice. Since we established this specialized practice area, we have provided advice and support on all phases of engineering services outsourcing for our clients.
“However, this was the first time we put all of our expertise to work across the board to help a client develop a new engineering services center from the ground up, and to get the facility up and running in record time.”
The new ZF India Technology Center will be dedicated to electronics, embedded software and mechanical engineering. It will support ZF’s global development teams while enabling the company to accelerate local product development supporting ZF customers in India.
It currently employs more than 1,000 engineers, with plans to expand the work force to 2,500 by 2020.